In the years since returning from that first trip to Asia, Maureen has still had her ups and downs. After getting married to the love of her life in 2013, she fell into a "comfort zone" slowing becoming "fat & happy."
In 2016 her father passed on to the next realm and she soon realized that she had allowed herself to gain back that same old annoying 20 pounds. In September 2017 she had had enough of feeling frumpy, fat, sluggish and depressed from the passing of her father, 2 uncles and an Aunt a year earlier. She used eating and drinking to drown her sorrows.
She decided back then, that she would never allow this to happen again. She knew better and she was going to do better, for herself and for her students. She didn't put a time limit on how long it would take to lose the weight, and she wasn't going to use any excuse to treat her body and mind unfairly. It was at that time she stopped, completely, arguing for her limitations.
Maureen had practiced meditation for many years off and on, but she decided that a daily meditation practice was imperative. It has been her daily mediation sessions that she refuses to compromise.
When one of her best friends passed away unexpectedly, she didn't wobble. She stayed the course, and felt joy at the thought of her dear friend finding peace from her unsteady life. If her friend only knew the joy that Maureen had found, maybe she would have been better to herself. Maybe she would have thought about how much of a friend we all needed.
Maureen's mission is to help people see how much there is is to live for. In this world where we are inundated with horrific and negative news on the TV, social media and in our daily conversations, Maureen chooses to cut out the crap that life is trying to dish out.
She wants everyone to see through the eyes of their best self, and she's doing it one student at a time. Are you with her?
Raised by a mother and father who were health conscious made Maureen's journey all the more interesting. Her mother, a runner and health fanatic, always made sure her kids ate 3 balanced meals per day. Sugar was pretty much banned in the house growing up, except for parties and family gatherings, which was when Maureen would binge, as a girl on anything sweet she could sink her teeth into. The night following her secret indulgences was often followed by a night of terrible stomach pains and vomiting. Reassuring her mother of the "poisons" in sugary and processed food.
Once Maureen moved away to college, she quickly gained the "freshman 15" or more like 20 pounds. The cafeteria dorms could not regulate the types of foods that she was eating, like her mother could when she was a child. By her sophomore year, when she returned to college after a summer "detox" at home in New Jersey, she realized that her mother's ways of eating were probably best and she easily lost the 20 pounds through exercise and choosing more nutritionally satisfying foods. But this situation would happen again 10 years later when she moved to Seoul, Korea to become and English teacher.
The partying and drinking, the new Korean delicacies and American comfort foods caught up to her and she had gained that 20 pounds all over again. She never weighed herself, but her clothes were very tight, and the tiny clothes made for Korean women would not fit her. "No Big Sizey!" they would say to her whenever she walked into a store. It was, to say the least, embarrassing.
Luckily she knew what to do and everyday, she climbed a mountain, literally. Each morning she walked up and down Namsan, the highest point in Seoul. She took the stairs instead of the escalators in the subways, and she got off a stop early, so she could walk the extra blocks to and from work. She stopped eating late at night, and drinking after work with friends. By the end of her year in Seoul, the weight had been lifted and she was even able to buy Korean sized clothes for her journey throughout Southeast Asia.
This journey changed her life in profound ways. It was in India, while she was studying yoga, that she realized how powerful intention can be. Looking back at that time, her year and a half in Asia, it softened her, mentally, emotionally and she became easier on herself and others; and most of all she developed a consistent and personal dedication to Ashtanga Yoga.
Through Ashtanga yoga, Maureen has helped people transform their lives. So many of her students have regained movement in places in their bodies where they had lost it many years before. Several female students who had trouble conceiving or maintaining their pregnancy, carried healthy babies to full term, under her watchful guidance.
Maureen has taken many trips back to India continuing her studies of yoga over the years.
You deserve to feel good, always......
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